This is one of those bad news/good news stories. First the bad news: veteran musher Gerry Willomitzer has scratched at the Iditarod checkpoint. The Canadian musher’s dog, Montego, got loose Friday during the run between Iditarod and Shageluk. A musher cannot officially check into a checkpoint without one of his dogs on the line or in his sled bag.
Now the good news: Montego was found on Sunday by someone not affiliated with the Iditarod and was taken to the Iditarod checkpoint. Willomitzer returned to the checkpoint to pick up Montego, but by that time he had already lost too much ground to continue with the race.
Montego is the second dog to get loose in Iditarod XLI. One of Newton Marshall’s dogs, Mae, slipped out of her harness earlier in the race just outside of Rohn. There have been several reported sightings of Mae near Rohn, but so far, the dog has not been captured.